Smartphone maker Motorola has partnered with Flipkart to launch six new television models between 32 and 65 inches and priced between Rs 13,999 and Rs 64,999. Essentially, Motorola’s new TV series will take on affordable options from players like Xiaomi, Vu, TCL and others.
The Motorola TV range is powered by Android 9.0 TV and there are four 4K resolution options in the list. The cheapest 4K variant will start at Rs 29,999. For Motorola though, the TV launch is an extension of its India partnership with Flipkart.
“When we started out in the 1960s we have sold TVs in the US. For us, it’s not about any particular product line. It’s about what’s best for the customer, and this launch is part of our strategic partnership with Flipkart,” said Uvais Chinoy, Head of Product Marketing and E-commerce at Motorola.
“When we were in our strategic discussion with Flipkart, this came across as a very unique opportunity to enter the household,” he added. Chinoy said the launch was a global first for Motorola and would be limited to India for now.
Flipkart holds all license and distribution rights for Motorola TVs and will also handle after sales service via its in-house Jeeves service. Like with mobile phones, Flipkart is also bundling three-year care for the Motorola TV for any kind of damage at Rs 199 per year. This is over the standard one-year warranty.
The Motorola TV series is being manufactured in India by Chinese TV manufacturer Skyworth at its factories in Chennai.
While Flipkart has been selling TVs under its own MarQ brand for a few years now, Adarsh Menon, Vice President and Head – Private Labels, Electronics and Furniture at Flipkart, said there is an opportunity for more players in the market. “We believe the strategy does not restrict us to only our own private labels. Using customer insights and then translating those into products, or working with trusted and valued partners such as Motorola, we believe there is enough room for many use cases, for many brands, and for many product propositions,” he said.
In Menon’s view, Motorola TV is a logical extension of the brand. “This is right in terms of brand extensions and the equity the brand Motorola has,” he said.
On India’s smart TV purchase trends, Menon said: “The first trend, of course, is that smart TVs are today becoming 80-90 per cent of all the TVs we sell. Obviously, people prefer watching online content on these TVs. The other thing is that India is quickly moving to a 43 inch and 55 inch TV.” However, he conceded that the upgrade cycle is still a relatively long 2-3 years.
These insights from Flipkart also explains why there are two 43-inch variants — a 4K one and another with full HD. The 50-inch and 55-inch variants are both priced under Rs 40,000 and come with 4K HDR support.
Interestingly, unlike Xiaomi which has its own Patchwall OS on the TV or even established players like LG or Samsung which add their own interface to the smart TVs, Motorola has kept the experience pure Android like its phones.
“Motorola has always believed in giving the cleanest possible experience to the customer. And that’s what’s really worked for us. That’s what kept our base loyal to us. That’s what people have come to expect from Motorola and so it continues with the TV,” Chinoy said.
The Motorola TV series be available will be available on Flipkart, starting September 29, when the e-commerce player holds its Big Billion Day sale.
The company also launched the Moto e6s at the event. The device will eventually be made available offline later. A cosmic blue variant for the phone will be coming towards the end of October.